This is nicer than it sounds (or looks). This is not Nigel’s exact recipe, but he never seems to mind if you muck them about a bit.
For the paste:
2 sticks lemongrass
2 tsp turmeric
big pinch dried chilli
wine-cork sized bit of ginger, peeled
1 small clove garlic
small bunch coriander
For the soup:
1 x 160ml can of coconut milk
1 pint chicken or fish stock
1 large head pak choi, chopped into bite-sized pieces
8 large prawns (I have a big bag in my freezer)
4 scallops, if you can get your hands on them, cod cheeks or just some chunks of white fish
1 In a whizzer, whizz up the lemongrass, chilli, ginger, turmeric garlic and coriander with a few glugs of peanut oil to loosen it up.
2 Fry half this paste gently in a pan, (keep the other half for about a week for another project), for about five minutes then add the stock and the coconut milk.
3 Heat all this up then add the prawns, scallops or white fish if using, and the pak choi. I have in the past left pak choi in its leaf form and nearly properly died as pak choi is incredibly fibrous and stringy and difficult to chew through, so needs to be chopped up firmly if you are not to choke to death.
4 Simmer all this for about ten minutes. To finish, season with salt, a dash of fish sauce and mirin (if you have some knocking about). Throw some chopped mint and extra coriander over the top, a squeeze of lime and serve.